Mighty metasearch – the new frontier of direct bookings?

You might be forgiven for thinking that as metasearch is on the rise we’re going to be less dependent on OTAs.

Not so fast.

Skift last week reported that over half of TripAdvisor’s Top Hotel Search Results on Instant Booking are powered by none other than Booking.com. This means TripAdvisor is driving bookings through the Priceline group, rather than direct. Some say it’s a short-term marriage for convenience, but could this be more Kim and Kanye than yet another Mariah Carey wedding?

We have to ask ourselves two questions:

  1.     Will other OTAs be allowed into the Instant Booking game?
  2.     Will independents sign up?

We don’t know the answer to number 1, but the second question will be fascinating to watch. Europe is full of beautiful independent hotels that have already been stung by high commissions. Just last week our GM of EMEA, James Osmond, heard the story of a hotelier in Italy that has grand plans to invest in the guest experience, but due to high commissions is struggling to do so. Yet another commission taker on the horizon doesn’t seem so appealing.

Time will tell. As we wait for the story to unfold, it’d be a great idea to sign up to our Direct Booking Summit. Hear from not just TripAdvisor, but Google and Skyscanner about the changes metasearch will bring in the distribution landscape.

About The Author

Triptease empowers hotels to recapture guest relationships and increase direct bookings. Follow our blog for the latest insights and trends in the Direct Booking Movement.